Q: I’m addicted to creamy dips for snacking and for entertaining, but I’m pretty sure they’re not the healthiest things to eat. What’s the smartest way to use non- or lowfat substitutes in a dip recipe without sacrificing major taste and texture?
A: We discovered that the trick to lightening up creamy dips is a combination of lowfat cottage cheese processed with a little boiling water and lowfat sour cream.
Most creamy dips rely on sour cream or mayonnaise or a combination of both for their rich flavor and smooth texture. This means that even in moderate quantities such as 3 tablespoons, a traditional creamy dip can contain a whopping 210 calories and 22 grams of fat. Substituting nonfat sour cream and mayonnaise may seem logical but this results in dips that are gluey, gloppy, and bland. After trying a mix of lowfat and nonfat dairy, we found that a blend of lowfat cottage cheese, processed with boiling water to eliminate its curds, and lowfat sour cream produced a tasty, velvety, and healthy alternative base for all of our creamy dips.
When using this method to develop our recipe for Green Goddess Dip, we shaved off 160 calories, 19 grams of fat (6 of them saturated), and 20 milligrams of cholesterol per 3-tablespoon serving.